Monday, April 29, 2013

Senate Environmental Committee To Consider Natural Gas Service Expansion Bills

On May 1 the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee meets to consider Senate Bill 738 (Yaw-R-Lycoming) providing for natural gas distribution system extension, expansion plans, Senate Bill 739 (Yaw-R-Lycoming) authorizing the Commonwealth Financing Authority to provide $15 million for school, hospital, small businesses to obtain access to natural gas in Room 461 of the Capitol at 10:30.

DEP Announces Air Quality Awareness Week

Pennsylvania will join states across the nation this week in recognizing April 29 through May 3 as Air Quality Awareness Week.
Air Quality Partnership teams across the state will host events to teach the public how to stay safe on air-quality action days and how to reduce air pollution. The Department of Environmental Protection’s website lists details of various events.
“Through smart and sensible policies, we’ve continued to see air quality improve across the state,” DEP Acting Secretary Chris Abruzzo said. “But there are still some days when the air quality is poor, and so we work with our partners to forecast and advise Pennsylvanians to take precautions.”
DEP makes air quality forecasts for fine particulate matter year-round and for ozone in the spring and summer months. Air Quality Awareness Week will mark the return of ozone forecasting in Pennsylvania for 2013.
The forecasts, developed in conjunction with local Air Quality Partnerships, use a color-based air quality index. Green signifies good; yellow means moderate; orange represents pollution levels that could trigger health effects for sensitive people, such as the very young, the elderly and those with respiratory ailments; and red warns of pollution levels that could trigger health effects for all members of the population.
These forecasts are provided in cooperation with the Air Quality Partnership of the Delaware Valley, the Southwest Pennsylvania Air Quality Partnership, the Lehigh Valley/Berks Air Quality Partnership and the Susquehanna Valley Air Quality Partnership.
In July 2012, DEP announced it would forecast for ozone in eight additional areas: Altoona, Erie, Johnstown, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, State College and Williamsport cities and Mercer and Indiana counties.
To sign up to receive air quality forecasts via email, visit the Air Quality Notifications webpage..
For more information about air quality or the local partnerships, visit DEP’s Air Quality Partnership webpage or call 717-787-9495.

2.2 Tons Of Trash Removed In Keep Washington County Beautiful Cleanup

In celebration of Earth Day, on April 22, Keep Washington County Beautiful, an affiliate of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, partnered with MarkWest Liberty Midstream & Resources, LLC for a 70 person volunteer roadside cleanup.
On a gorgeous spring day, the volunteers worked diligently to remove litter from approximately 10 miles of road along State Route 519 (beginning with the intersection from Pike Street in Houston to the intersection with State Route 50 in Hickory), approximately 1.5 miles of road along Meddings, and 1.5 miles along Paxton Road both in Chartiers Township.
Police from Chartiers and Mt. Pleasant Township provided traffic control to ensure the volunteers’ safety.  Chartiers Township Public Works Department crews picked up the collected trash bags that contained a total of 2.2 tons of trash removed as well as 81 tires.
The partnership efforts between Keep Washington County Beautiful, Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, Chartiers Township, Mount Pleasant  Township, and MarkWest enabled this cleanup to be the most successful volunteer roadside cleanup since the inception of Keep Washington County Beautiful back in July of 2009.  
This cleanup also ranks as one of the top cleanups in the state for Earth Day this year for number of volunteers and miles of roadside cleaned.

Monday NewsClips

Editorial: Susquehanna River Impaired
Click Here for PA Capitol Digest NewsClips

Friday, April 26, 2013

April 29 PA Environment Digest Now Available

The April 29 PA Environment Digest is now available.  Click Here to print entire Digest.

DEP’s Proposed Drilling Reg Changes, Drilling Permit Fee Increases Move Ahead

DEP’s Oil and Gas Technical Advisory Board Tuesday gave the Department of Environmental Protection its recommendation to go ahead with proposed changes to drilling regulations in Chapter 78 required by Act 13 of 2011.
The Board also heard a presentation on the proposed revisions to the well permit fees, which agency staff said were moving forward through the regulatory process.
At the meeting, DEP staff said the agency would be forming a series of work groups during the public review period for the Chapter 78 changes to look more deeply into several key issues.   The size and make-up of the work groups are still to be worked out.
Click Here for the latest available documents circulated at the Board meeting.

Earth Day Message From The PA Growing Greener Coalition

For all of us involved in the PA Growing Greener Coalition, every day is Earth Day.
Our member organizations work 365 days a year to restore our streams and rivers, conserve land, protect our drinking water, create parks, preserve farms and save our historic treasures.
Together, we keep Pennsylvania growing greener.
But what a difference a year makes.
Last year on Earth Day, we were fighting the largest cut to conservation funding in state history with the proposed elimination of the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund.
We were also fighting the permanent elimination of the farmland preservation program as we know it, putting our family farms - and our local food supply - at risk of being lost forever.
The good news is that by working together we won!
Thanks to the strength of the Coalition and our partners, the Legislature rejected the proposed cuts and restored funding for these critical programs to continue Pennsylvania's preservation legacy.
However, our work is never over.
The Commonwealth continues to face serious threats to environmental protection because of dwindling funds, weakening policies, and political obstacles.
The Coalition is committed to advocating for public funding to conserve and protect land, water, wildlife habitat, and historic places, and to ensure well-managed parks and recreational areas throughout the state.
If you have not yet signed our statement of support, please take a moment to do so by visiting our website, where you can also make a donation to the Coalition.
And don't forget to like and share our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @PaGrowGreen.
Together, we can help ensure that Pennsylvania continues its legacy of conservation and preservation - on Earth Day and every day.
Thank you.
Sincerely, Andrew Heath, Executive Director, PA Growing Greener Coalition

Friday NewsClips

Smallmouth Bass An Indicator Of Chesapeake Bay Health
Click Here for PA Capitol Digest NewsClips

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